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Two WVHS seniors recognized for their talent in the arts

on June 1, 2017
Award recipients with school administrators and teachers

Pictured, left to right: Keely Blaikner, WVHS Orchestra Director and Art and Music Department Chairperson; Ian O’Neill; Dr. David Leach, Superintendent of Schools; Jillian Wagner; and WVHS art teacher Kristen Spano.

Two members of the Warwick Valley High School Class of 2017 were among those recognized at the 4th annual Senior Scholar Humanities Breakfast hosted by Orange-Ulster BOCES on April 27, 2017.

High school seniors from across the county who have distinguished themselves in the humanities were honored for their significant achievements in the arts and humanities. The students, their parents, teachers, high school principals and superintendents were invited to celebrate the outstanding accomplishments/performances in the arts including fine arts, theater, music and more. 

The two award recipients from WVHS are:

Jillian Wagner: Jillian will be furthering her education in art and music in the fall of 2017 in New York. She plans on studying audio engineering and fine art. Jillian has been an active member and president of Art Club for the past four years, and has participated in the chair auction for three consecutive years. Her artwork has been recognized and displayed at SUNY New Paltz, SUNY Orange, Student Expo at the Galleria Mall, and Warwick’s Annual District Art Show. She is currently working on a private art exhibit at The Buckbee Center in Warwick for her senior project. After school, Jillian furthers her studies in music at the Warwick School of Music. She plays guitar in an all-girl alternative band, Conspiracy, and has performed in places such as the Vernon Inn and Pine Island Jazzfest, as well as many other venues in Orange County.

Ian O’Neill: Ian will be furthering his education as a Music Management or Pop Music Major at either SUNY Purchase or William Paterson University. He plans to pursue a career at a record label or music distribution company of some sort. Ian plays upright bass in the WVHS honors band and honors orchestra programs, as well as playing electric bass in the Jazz Ensemble. Along with music, Ian had a brief stint on the varsity dive team, which was cut short due to a broken collarbone and wanting to devote more time to his musical endeavors. Outside of school, Ian plays electric bass and guitar in three indie-rock groups called Furnace Creek, Wooden Fork, and Gus Dapperton. These groups play all around the country but typically play in the Manhattan/Brooklyn areas. He is also in the process of scoring a film for a film student at SUNY Purchase.

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